Tuesday, October 07, 2014

Misplaced Bookworm: A Failure to Communicate

In this day and age of social media, how could I possibly lose track of someone?  It seems that I have done just that. To compound my shame and annoyance, this person is MALE, so I can't blame it on she-got-married-and-changed-her-name.

I've lost all my contact information for Pablo, my bookish co-worker from Gumi.  I wrote about him regularly in this blog.  During those first few years in Korea, if I hadn't had him to exchange books and movies with, life would have been -- well, I don't want to over-dramatize, but it would have been a lot less nice.  A lot less civilized.  He left our workplace and I followed a year or two later, leaving town.  We met up once after that, and exchanged a few emails.  Then, nothing.  That was five years ago.  Social media isn't Pablo's thing, so I don't think I'll find him on Facebook, Twitter LinkedIn...

Carelessness and complacency.  I allowed a perfect storm of old phone numbers stored in lost old cell phones and a couple of defunct email accounts to sever the last links.  I relied on our mutual buddy, CanadaBoy to always keep this information, while he was relying on me.  I was so sure I had Pablo's email.  I would have sworn to it in court.  The whole mess boils down to a failure to communicate, and not just on my end.  I cared, but I was busy.  I have a hatful of crap excuses.  The truth is: I wasn't paying attention.

This is even more maddening because just last spring, Pablo popped up in the comment section of  my post about oatmeal.  I was feeling frustrated about not finding it in the grocery stores here, and he offered advice:

Try Googling Nice Deli Korea for your oatmeal fix.They're based in Pusan I think and will deliver.
Came across your blog purely by chance and surprised to see you're still in Korea!

I followed his Blogger link, but no joy.  No blog.  I guess he just uses his account to comment on the odd blog here and there.  He wrote that he came here 'purely by chance'.  So does he read me regularly now, or was that a one-off?  Is there any hope that he'll pass this way again?

As for going to Gumi and hunting him down, I don't remember exactly where he lives.  I don't remember the name of the bakery where he went/goes every week to get 'proper' bread.  He's not much of a social butterfly either, so I can't go downtown and poke my head in every bar looking for a 6 ft. 4 Welshman who likes Jim Beam or Jack Daniels or one of those liquors with a first name and a surname.

Korea's in my rearview mirror come spring, and there's a small list of people that I want to see once more before I go.

Pablo, where are you?

Found him!  Luckily, I was a little slow to technology, and I used to write everyone's contact information in a journal.  It was just a matter of locating the journals and laboriously paging through all my cringeworthy entries.  And there he was.  We've talked on the phone, and he and CanadaBoy and I are planning a reunion.  I am very squeeeeee!

1 comment:

Melwyk said...

How wonderful! I hate the feeling of losing contact info and feeling at loose ends after that... thank goodness for old school pen & paper. Have a great reunion!